German transportation runs with German efficiency, and getting around the country is a snap — although you'll need to pay top price for top speed. The most popular options by far are to rent a car, or take the train. If the train is too expensive for you, traveling by arranged ride-sharing is often a viable alternative in Germany.
Germany offers a fast and if booked in advance affordable railway system that reaches many parts of the country. Unless you travel by car, rail is likely to be your major mode of transportation. Crossing Germany from Munich in the south to Hamburg in the north will usually take around 6 h, while driving by car will take around 8 h.
Almost all long-distance and many regional trains are operated by Deutsche Bahn "German Rail" , the formerly state-run railway company. DB's website (http://www.bahn.com/i/vie...), also available in many other languages, is an excellent resource for working out transportation options not only in Germany generally all modes except air travel; bus, ship and branch line timetables being incomplete but also pretty much anywhere in Europe train and a few selected long-distance bus routes only. An interesting gimmick is the carbon dioxide emission comparisons for different train journeys.
It is possible to hitchhike in Germany and most Germans speak basic English, so you will be understood if you speak slowly. Drivers rarely expect you to give them any money for the ride. The first letters of the German number plate before the hyphen indicate the city in which the car is registered. If you know the code for your destination (http://de.wikipedia.org/w...), it will increase your chances of stopping the right vehicle.
It is illegal to stop on the Autobahn itself, but hitchhiking from service areas or petrol stations is a good way of getting long rides 100-200 km. The hard part is getting onto the Autobahn, so it pays off to sleep near the gas stations if you are going far. At the gas stations, you can get a free booklet called Tanken und Rasten with a map of the Autobahn and its gas stations. When getting a lift, agree with the driver where to get off, and make sure there is a gas station. Try to avoid the Autohofs.
It is also quite common to arrange a ride in a private vehicle in advance through on offline agency or the Internet. Offline agencies like Citynetz (http://www.citynetz-mitfa...) or ADM (http://www.mitfahrzentralen.de) do have offices in major cities, mostly near the city center or the main railway station. These offline agencies do charge a commission to the cost for fuel you need to pay for the driver.
In the recent, years online services to arrange rides in private vehicles became very popular, as both parties do not have to pay the commission to traditional agencies. You need to contribute only towards fuel costs. example: Frankfurt to Berlin 25 euro. You can contact the driver directly by e-mail, phone or sms. As the drivers need to be registered, it is safer than hitchhiking.
Hitchhikers (http://www.hitchhikers.de) is a comparable service, multilingual and free. Mitfahrgelegenheit (http://www.mitfahrgelegen...) and Mitfahrzentrale (http://www.mitfahrzentrale.de/) are other well known players with plenty of rides in their databases. Mitfahrzentrale even operates all over Europe. Raumobil (http://www.raumobil.de) is a new player in the market but a more private-run affair. Mitflugzentrale (http://www.mitflugzentrale.de) arranges rides in private planes.
Another form of hitchhiking available in Germany is on the trains. People purchase a Wochenende-ticket weekend ticket which allows them to take up to four other people with them on the regional transports for the entire weekend. To hitch a ride with these travelers, first figure out which regional transportation you will need to take in order to reach your destination. You may figure that out online at the German train website (http://www.bahn.de/intern...), making sure to check "regional transportation only" or train stations in major cities have computer terminals in which you can do the same. Then, just hop on the train that is going your way.
Always, within one car you will find someone willing to let you tag along. "Haben Sie ein Wochenendeticket?" Do you have a weekend ticket? "Darf ich bei Ihnen mitfahren?" May I travel with you?. Just make sure it is the right train and the weekend.
By Recreational Vehicle And Campervans
German campgrounds like most others in Western Europe usually offer a full range of amenities. You always have your own electricity hookup, and water and sewer hookups for each are common,. Every campground has restrooms and showers as well as kitchens, washing-machines and a spin dryer.
The yellow pages of camping, or, if you like, the German camping bible, is the ADAC CampingfÃ¼hrer, a campground guide by Germany's largest automobile club ADAC. It lists almost all campgrounds along with prices, type of location, size, opening hours, amenities, you-name-it. Since the guide uses lots of symbols which are explained in a number of languages, it is suitable for travellers from abroad, too.
Germany has a world-famous network of excellent roads and Autobahn motorway with no toll or fees for cars trucks have to pay, but gasoline prices are kept high by taxation. As of July 2011 prices float around â¬1.50 per litre for petrol 91 and 95 octane, and around â¬1.40 per litre for diesel. Oddly, normal petrol and "super" is the same price in Germany. At petrol stations, you have the choice between Diesel, Benzin 91 octane, Super 95 octane and SuperPlus 98 octane or Ultimate 100 octane. Also, LPG liquid petroleum gas is available with few problems on highways. Here and there, you might find "Erdgas"; this is compressed natural gas not gasoline. In Germany, you may first fill up your tank and pay afterwards only if the petrol station is staffed, of course. Some stations will not release the fuel to pump unless you pay first or at least hand over a credit card in advance.
A few long distance bus lines exist within Germany, most of them orientated to or from Berlin. Besides, there is a very useful long-distance bus line, the "Neun-Euro Bus". If booked in advance, you can end up paying just nine euro for any trip on the bus line connecting Hamburg and the airport, Hanover and the airport, Kassel, Frankfurt and the airport, Mannheim and Heidelberg. The bus runs during the night. For more information, check (http://www.touring.de/Bus...)
Apart from these, there is a very dense network of regional and local bus lines. In rural areas, though, many lines run only once per day. Regional and local express bus line designators usually contain the letters CE local, E regional around Hamburg; in other areas, E is used for special runs, S regional, SB regional and local or X local within Berlin, city bus line designators may contain the letters BB "BÃ¼rgerbus", not integrated within tariff unions, C or O. Always check the departure boards carefully: sometimes, especially at night or in rural areas, you have to order your bus by phone.